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Faith, Strength and Hope

Updated: Jan 22, 2021

Nov. 25 brings with it the same problem every year:

" The international day for the elimination of violence against women"

Every time I want to invite someone to speak about this, or share a thought, or just put the name in the calendar, it takes ages to go through the whole title:

" The international day for the elimination of violence against women"

Every year I wish someone would come up with a new name for the day. Pesach, so easy, one word. Same with Channukah and Purim. We allow ourselves to go over the top with two-worded festivals like Yom Kippur, or Rosh HaShanah [If you come from a different religious tradition, think about your own big festivals].

But, 10 words?!

Is there one word we could use to capture the essence of Nov. 25? Think about the other festivals I just mentioned, how does each of them capture the spirit of the day?

What is the spirit and heart, of a day focused on eliminating physical, financial, spiritual, sexual, verbal violence against women around the world?

My question is, what is this day about? And yes, the original title is self explanatory, but won't stick in our mind and on our tongues as long as it is so, well, long.

When we create a name for a meaningful day, how do we raise up to our mouths the most accurate word describing the place we want to GO TO with this day? What is the primal myth or image that should tug at our soul on this day?

Pesach/Passover recalls the moment God/dess Passed Over the homes of her people, it is about moments of being spared a horrible fate. Of some safety within a raging fire around you.

Purim comes from "Pur"- casting a lot, so it is about the weird and wonderful ways in which chance overturns destiny and what "had to be" doesn't have to happen.

I think that some of the most wonderful festival names hold within them a germinating potential, of our life and the world as we want it to be.

I don't have a name yet for November 25, but this year I'm going to use the day to try and birth its essence for myself.

I will read and listen and make sure to recover stories of power and peace, and then make sure to spread them far and wide.

This year here in Edmonton we are teaming up with the Anglican Church, with the Muslim community and faith friends around the city, to explore healing. Between Nov. 25 and Dec. 10 we'll share short videos featuring faith leaders sending out messages affirming our cultures commitment to banishing all forms of violence against women from our society.

I'll add a link once we air.

Are you inspired to offer a name? If so, add it the comments box.

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